Your Thoughts on Feminism

 (update: it’s late for this, but for what it’s worth)

So I’m inviting people to comment because it’s kind of blown over and I’m interested:

Forget your thoughts on the legitimacy of this poll in particular. Sara doesn’t consider herself feminist – makes sense in that she says she supports choice in childcare as much or more for the sake of the children. I don’t see that it is necessarily un-feminist to think of it that way in that I consider it pro-woman because I think it gives women more flexibility in accomplishing what they want for their life and their kid’s lives. Its a moot point because nobody knew Sara doesn’t think of herself as feminist until after she was on the poll. She didn’t want or ask to be taken off and the CBAers hadn’t thought of asking everyone nominated to the category and who their judge considered to be feminist if they thought so themselves. Since it’s not concretely definable – as many commenters and the judge have said – just because you’re a woman, it doesn’t make you a feminist, maybe that would make sense to do in another year.

I’m curious about the reasons the judge gave – like about “the stripper”, daycare, or freedom of speech. So this isn’t about rejecting the reasons she gave, it’s about what you would say about them if you were judging.

The CBA judge rejected one blogger as a feminist because she’s “a stripper”. Said fern hill in the comments at NorthernBC Dipper’s place: “‘One was a stripper. . . ‘ Where to begin?” I mentioned in the comments of my last post that Wonder Woman (believed to be “the stripper”) attracts readers in ways that you could definately say does not do much for women bloggers being taken seriously.

– Would you exclude stripper-bloggers from the feminist category? Does Wonder Woman reduce female bloggers to being more about how they look instead of how they write – making it difficult for women to be recognized on their merits? Maybe since the blogosphere in particular can be anonymous it doesn’t really affect other women bloggers… Or should it actually be points in her favour that she uses the female figure to influence her readers. After all a lot of male bloggers do that – arguably she is taking that turf back from them and denying them a monopoly on gaining readers in that way. Is it a concession to the skewed values of our culture that women who get ahead by posing in ways that men crave are now celebrated for it – or is it just dealing with the way things are? Doesn’t it contribute to body image pressure, to the point that some feminists now say they find burkas liberating? Damned, damned if I know. What’s your take?

– how would advocating free speech be feminist?
(and “advocating hate speech” then not be?)

– Daycare: What about what the CBA judge said, how that if a person advocates choice in childcare that can be included as feminist if they believe that it is good for women. ie: can there be disagreement on what is good for women and how far that goes. I think April Reign specified in the NorthernBCDipper thread that you have to support a direct subsidy of daycare spaces – not giving a tax credit to a family or single parent. What if someone thinks that a tax credit is more beneficial, and/or values the choice it offers?

– Abortion: Camille Paglia says she supports abortion even though she considers it privileging the rights of one group of individuals over another. Does a person who believes that an unborn baby/feotus is an individual have to support abortion to be feminist in your view? Is Paglia right to see Palin as a feminist despite opposing abortion or is she wrong to think supporting abortion is a benefit to women – do you think that unrestricted abortion hurts women? Does feminism to you require that only the benefit to women be considered?

Update… invitation links (some were sent by email): Because I really must know what the consensus is on stripper bloggers


8 Responses to “Your Thoughts on Feminism”

  1. saskboy Says:

    “that can be included as feminist if they believe that it is good for women. ie: can there be disagreement on what is good for women and how far that goes. I think April Reign specified in the NorthernBCDipper thread that you have to support a direct subsidy of daycare spaces – not giving a tax credit to a family or single parent.”

    And that’s where I respectfully disagree with April Reign. I think giving an advantage to people who choose to live off two incomes instead of one actually leads to a harder family life because in order to keep up with the Jones’, there’s more temptation to stick a kid into day care just to get ahead or make ends meet. The government should be making it possible for single parents to work, or to stay home to care for children, and for children with two parents to have one in the home at all times.

  2. saskboy Says:

    * Welcome to Vegas!
    * Sadly, NOT an Onion headline
    * HoHoHo (with a context)!
    * I bet you never thought
    * R.I.P.
    * Hajj Rituals
    * What does it feel like to be hated?
    * The War of Words
    * Weekend Pinup
    * Just another day in socialized medicine

    And that’s one big reason why that blog wouldn’t likely be considered for a category that is supposed to be for blogs that write 50% or more about the subject. That’s also why JJ was accidentally excluded, because she hadn’t been writing about feminism all that much during the judging period and the judge had too many blogs to go through to get deep into archives.

  3. da wolfe Says:

    But I want to know about the Pinups! I’m seriously conflicted about it… but I perused her blog a bit too and I think she presents a “strong” image… I’d love to know what she thinks, if it’s ever been a consideration for her.

  4. balbulican Says:

    The whole debate comes down to a basic problem. Everyone simply applies their own definition of “feminist” to the question. I have a definition. You have yours. All we can really say is:

    a) This is how I define the term.
    b) This is why sample X does or not meet the criteria implied by my definition.

    What the CBA needs to do right up front is say: “This is how we define the term ‘feminist’ in this context. This may not be in accordance with the way YOU use the term, but for the purposes of these awards, THIS is the definition we will use.”

  5. fern hill Says:

    Of course, a stripper can be a feminist. So can a taxi-driver, a lawyer; anybody can be a feminist.

    Feminists generally call themselves feminists. And the definition usually includes something about gender equality and about the fact that the world is run by men, a fact feminism is working on changing. If someone doesn’t call herself a feminist, and in fact says ‘I’m no feminist’, that would be a pretty big clue to me that she isn’t.

    On the other hand, claiming to be a feminist while holding views that are hostile to feminism is a recent right-wing gambit. It confuses people who think that feminism means ‘women can too do stuff’, like run for governor of Alaska.

    There’s a great website called Feminism 101
    meant to address some of the drearily recurrent questions about it.

    Right now I’m engaged over at Wonder Woman’s place and taking some abuse for being a feminist. I just asked her if she calls herself a feminist. I’m betting not. 😉

  6. da wolfe Says:

    heh, I’ve already been referred there – it’s an intersting site : ) Wonder Woman told me she’s not a feminist – she never took her own nomination as serious, although the question I was interested in isn’t specifically about her – I hope this doesn’t become a s***storm over there too because she also told me she gets the kind of reaction about her former profession that she calls self-righteous and hypocritical from the left. I guess my point of view is that there is a feminism that sees the right as anti-feminist but I don’t think we’re anti-woman. Actually ff101 has a quote about how feminism can’t be defined but you get called it when you don’t act like a doormat.

    Which is why the discussion is so interesting and lends to so much dispute. I think Balbulican’s quite right, maybe that’s partly the point of this thread. (No, it’s about strippers!)

  7. balbulican Says:

    There are no doubt “feminists” who would look down their noses at Wonder Woman. I am reasonably sure that the hyperchristian prigs would do the same.

  8. da wolfe Says:

    man my last comment was ignorant. “heh, I’ve already been referred there”? How easily does that translate as “haha teh wymnz all sends the same link”? That’s not what I mean. And what do I think I am being all like ‘oh, hope it doesn’t get scrappy over there’ – a blogging ref? I mean, that’s Alan’s job. Brilliant…

    I’ve always said that (christian) fundamentalists are the best people in the world, but then, read RedTory’s blog much and you realize that many of them are up there for the worst people in the world. It reminds me of a time I was with a youth group in Saskatoon – across the street some worldly kids yelled at us and nobody had a clue why – some of the kids were quite stung by it. It was new to me but I started to realize we looked just so ostentatiously innocent to someone not part of it, having our special time of godliness and holy enjoyment on a friday night.

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